Post written by Lana Kang, Archives Consultant at Go For Broke National Education Center
My name is Lana Kang, and I am a consultant at the Go For Broke National Education Center. I graduated from Washington and Lee University with a B.A. in Japanese Language and Literature. In addition to consulting with GFBNEC, I work full time as the Director of Operations at Hopalong Animal Rescue, a non-profit rescue focusing on adopting out dogs and cats in the San Francisco Bay Area. This past December, I graduated with my M.S. in Library and Information Science from Syracuse University. Pursing my two passions of animal rescue and literacy/preservation at the same time has been both difficult and extremely rewarding!
I started working for Go For Broke National Education Center in July as an archives intern through my library science program. I was ecstatic to find a hands-on experience that combined my interests of preservation with my studies of Japanese culture and language. My primary duties include indexing and cataloging the Hanashi Oral History Interviews and the Military Intelligence Service Veterans Club of Hawaii Interviews of Japanese-American World War II veterans.
When I started indexing interviews, I recognized that the Japanese-American experience during World War II was difficult and fraught with challenges, but I was surprised by the extent and depth of those challenges. While their family and friends back home were corralled into incarceration camps, the Nisei soldiers bravely overcame racial discrimination, attacks on their loyalty and character, and overwhelming odds during their service to our country. It is a powerful and moving experience to be able to see the veteran’s faces and hear their first-hand accounts through these oral history interviews. I am honored to contribute to an organization that not only archives and records these important stories, but also educates others by the legacy of the Japanese-American soldiers during World War II.